Surrealism Beyond Borders, by Stephanie D’Alessandro & Matthew Gale

Staff Pick

Although commonly thought of as an inter-war European movement, Surrealism in fact influenced and encompassed artists and writers from all over the globe well into the later part of the 20th century. This catalogue to an exhibition at the Met features work from women and men from 45 different countries, and illustrates how Surrealism was a means to open minds and challenge political orthodoxies. It's a survey that will expand your mind and help you to move beyond Magritte in understanding one of the most important and influential movements of the last century.


Surrealism Beyond Borders By Stephanie D'Alessandro, Matthew Gale Cover Image
ISBN: 9781588397270
Availability: In Stock—Click for Locations
Published: Metropolitan Museum of Art - October 26th, 2021

How Do We Look by Mary Beard

Staff Pick

Confronted with an image whose age, provenance, and purpose we don't know, how do we make sense of what we see? If "we" are part of Western culture, we’re likely to see what the classical tradition has taught us to see. As the world-renowned classics scholar Mary Beard shows in her beautiful How Do We Look (Liveright, $24.95), whether we realize it or not, we interpret, and often judge, a work according to how it compares with iconic pieces such as the Apollo Belvedere, which in the eighteenth century seemed virtually to set the standard for the civilized figure. While Westerners may still seek out works "fully understandable in our own aesthetic terms," things have changed a lot in recent decades. Beard's book, which includes the two sections she contributed to the new BBC series Civilisations—which substantially updates Kenneth Clark's 1969 Civilisation—focuses on images of the human body and images of divinity. Both surveys take Beard beyond Athens and Rome to Mexico, China, Cambodia, Turkey, and India; throughout, she examines the importance of context and perspective, traces arguments against idolatry, looks at the effects of iconoclasm, and rejects artist-centered criticism for one that puts “the viewers of art back into the frame.”

How Do We Look: The Body, the Divine, and the Question of Civilization By Mary Beard Cover Image
ISBN: 9781631494406
Availability: Backordered
Published: Liveright - September 4th, 2018

Ninth Street Women by Mary Gabriel

Staff Pick

The Ninth Street Show is the exhibition that truly brought abstract expressionism to prominence, and men dominated the attention and the future earnings. But also featured were many women, five of whom—Lee Krasner, Elaine de Kooning, Grace Hartigan, Joan Mitchell, and Helen Frankenthaler—are the subject of Ninth Street Women (Little, Brown, $35). If it were simply a corrective to the prevailing male-focused canon, this book would be worth a look, but with biographer Mary Gabriel, you get much more. Through research pulled from diaries, letters, memoirs, and more, she brings you so close to her subjects and their coterie, every triumph feels as hard-won and bittersweet, every loss as devastating, as it must have been for them in the moment. The book is incomparable at capturing what it can mean to shoot for something that separates you from the straight and narrow, with all the joyous and upsetting complexities that brings.

Ninth Street Women: Lee Krasner, Elaine de Kooning, Grace Hartigan, Joan Mitchell, and Helen Frankenthaler: Five Painters and the Movement That Changed Modern Art By Mary Gabriel Cover Image
ISBN: 9780316226189
Availability: Special Order—Subject to Availability
Published: Little, Brown and Company - September 25th, 2018